2020 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year long-shot predictions

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We know the NBA is coming but not until the end of July. Who knows if we’ll ever see baseball this summer. The good news is we have plenty of NFL futures to put some money down on.

For Defensive Rookie of the Year, I look for a player that can get to the quarterback or one that can have a ton of tackles. Last year’s Defensive Rookie of the Year, Nick Bosa, had nine sacks and the 2018 winner, Darius Leonard, finished the season with 163 tackles.

Redskins defensive end and second-overall pick Chase Young is an exciting player, and I feel like he can become a star. But at +200 at most books, those odds aren’t enticing enough for me.

Here is who I’m throwing some money down on.

Baltimore Ravens LB Patrick Queen (+1,200 at Westgate)

Selected with the 28th pick, Patrick Queen is slated to be an immediate starter for the AFC North champs. The Ravens lost inside linebackers Patrick Onwuasor and Josh Bynes to free agency but I see Queen as an upgrade. The last time we saw him on a football field, he registered eight tackles, 2.5 for a loss, en route to being named Defensive MVP in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Queen finished up LSU’s perfect season with 85 tackles.

Thanks to the reigning NFL MVP Lamar Jackson, a lot of eyes will be on the Ravens in 2020. That means a lot of folks will be seeing #48 in purple and black flying around the field (Queen ran a 4.50 40 at the NFL Combine). Let’s ride together with Queen at +1,200.

A little history lesson. Queen is the fifth linebacker Baltimore has selected in the first round since the franchise moved from Cleveland in 1996. He joins Ray Lewis, Peter Boulware, Terrell Suggs and C.J. Mosley. Not too shabby of a fraternity. Bouleware (1997) and Suggs (2003) both won Defensive Rookie of the Year.

San Francisco 49ers DL Javon Kinlaw (+2,600 at FanDuel)

The 49ers traded away DeForest Buckner in exchange for the 14th-overall pick in the draft and quickly filled Buckner’s spot. Similar to Patrick Queen, Javon Kinlaw should be an instant impact player. With Nick Bosa, Solomon Thomas, Arik Armstead and Dee Ford, Kinlaw joins quite a dominant defensive line in the Bay Area.

Only two defensive tackles, Ndamukong Suh and Aaron Donald, have won Defensive Rookie of the Year since 1995. However, according to Pro Football Focus, Kinlaw finished third in the FBS with a 90.7 pass-rush grade despite playing nearly a third of his snaps at nose tackle. If Kinlaw continues to improve as a pass rusher, he could benefit greatly from teams being more worried about his elite teammates sharing the same line.

Before you buy, make sure you shop around. Kinlaw is currently +1,400 at the Westgate SuperBook, +2,500 at DraftKings and +2,600 FanDuel.

Seattle Seahawks LB Jordyn Brooks (+3,000 at Westgate)

Brooks is an intriguing long shot to me. Seattle grabbed the Texas Tech product with the 27th pick. Brooks was a tackling machine in Lubbock, finishing 2019 with 108 tackles, 20 tackles for loss and was named a second-team All-American.

“He’s Bobby Wagner. That’s what he is.” NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger had high praise of Jordyn Brooks on Dan Hellie’s podcast, The HelliePod, after the NFL Draft. If Brooks can be 80 percent as productive as his new teammate, a five-time First-Team All-Pro, I’ll happily place a 30/1 long shot on him.

Tim Murray is the host of “The Daily Line” radio show as well as a sports betting analyst for NBC Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @1TimMurray.

Canucks vs Golden Knights picks and predictions for Game 1


Perhaps no team has been more fun to follow during the NHL playoffs than the Vancouver Canucks, and hockey bettors can still get the Canucks at +1,300 to hoist Lord Stanley’s cup. Vancouver is coming off a thrilling series win against the defending champion St. Louis Blues, but now a much more difficult challenge awaits. The Vegas Golden Knights are +350 favorites to win it all, and they’ve certainly looked the part while dropping only one playoff contest.

Game 1 of this series gets underway Sunday, so we’re here to bring you our NHL picks and predictions in this Western Conference semifinal showdown.

Vancouver Canucks vs Vegas Golden Knights betting preview

Starting Goalies

Canucks: Jacob Markstrom – playoffs – 7-3, 2.44 GAA, .929 SV% (season – 23-16, 2.75 GAA, .918 SV%)

Golden Knights: Robin Lehner – playoffs – 5-1, 2.44 GAA, .904 SV% (season – 19-10, 2.89, .920 SV%)

If this game was actually played in Las Vegas, then Markstrom could easily spend a few hours performing with Cirque du Soleil. The 30-year-old dazzled against Blues with an eye-opening array of acrobatic saves and an impressive 7-3 record. He’ll need to provide more of the same against a dangerous Vegas squad.

The Knights will likely roll with Robin Lehner, who has taken over the spot as Vegas’s starter in the crease—and rightfully so. Still, the Knights have the luxury of having Marc-Andre Fleury as their “backup.” The five-time All-Star matched an NHL record this season with his 14th consecutive playoff appearance.


Vancouver: Tyler Myers D (out), Tyler Toffoli RW (out), Micheal Ferland LW (out), Josh Leivo LW (out)

Vegas: Tomas Nosek LW (out)

Betting Trend to Know

Canucks are 0-6 in their last six Sunday games. Find the latest NHL betting trends for Canucks vs. Golden Knights.


The Canucks have been a force with the extra man during the postseason, converting 26.2% of their power plays. While the Knights are known for their offensive firepower, it’s their stingy defense that allows them to suffocate opponents—as evidenced by an 86.4% penalty kill during their playoff run. Vancouver is the only team in the league to never beat Vegas in regulation, going 0-11 all time. That’s something I just can’t ignore.

PREDICTION: Vegas ML (-175)


Each team is filled with loads of offensive talent. Vancouver’s Bo Horvat and J.T. Miller have combined for 11 goals thus far. Elias Pettersson has racked up 13 points, tied with Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon for the playoff lead.

The Knights can match Vancouver’s scorers, but they’re more balanced—Shea Theodore, Alex Tuch and Mark Stone have each lit the lamp four times during the postseason. The difference is on defense, where Vancouver has allowed the most high-danger chances of all remaining playoff teams.

PREDICTION: Over 5.5 (-110)


Though I like Vegas to win, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Canucks kept it close and continued their offensive success. I’ll take a flyer on Vancouver scoring at least three goals.

PREDICTION: Canucks total goals Over 2.5 (-100)

Canucks vs Golden Knights Betting Card

  • Vegas ML (-175)
  • Over 5.5 (-110)
  • Canucks total goals Over 2.5 (-100)
NHL Parlays

Did you know that if you parlayed today’s NHL Canucks vs Golden Knights picks, you could win $104.93 on a $10 bet?

Use our NHL parlay calculator to create your own parlays and see their potential payouts.

Verlander injury shuffles Astros’ MLB futures odds

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MLB betting got a shake-up Sunday afternoon, specifically on World Series odds and AL pennant odds, with news that Astros star pitcher Justin Verlander could miss the rest of the season – or at least a significant chunk of it – with an arm injury.

Initial reports suggested Verlander had an elbow ailment, but both he and manager Dusty Baker quickly denied that. Baker called it a forearm strain and said that Verlander would be re-evaluated in “a couple of weeks.” The reigning AL Cy Young winner pitched a solid six innings in an 8-2 Opening Day rout of the Seattle Mariners on Friday.

Verlander’s injury led oddsmakers to shuffle futures book odds on the defending AL champions. Covers checked in on the MLB odds moves with a couple of Las Vegas sportsbooks.

How does Verlander’s injury affect Astros’ World Series odds?

At CG Technology books, risk analyst Rich Zanco said the Astros quickly moved from +1,200 to +1,800 in World Series futures. The SuperBook at Westgate also had Houston pegged +1,200 prior to Sunday’s news and initially went to +1,600, then dialed it a little further to +1,800.

However, there were apparently buyers on the Astros at that point, prompting the SuperBook to reel the price in to +1,400.

How does Verlander’s injury affect Astros’ American League odds?

In AL pennant futures, the Astros initially moved from +600 to +800 at The SuperBook, then ticked back to +700.

World Series odds

Team Odds to win
Los Angeles Dodgers +350
New York Yankees +350
Houston Astros +600
Atlanta Braves +1,600
Minnesota Twins +1,600
Tampa Bay Rays +1,800
Washington Nationals +2,000
Cleveland Indians +2,000
New York Mets +2,000
Chicago Cubs +2,000
Oakland Athletics +2,000
St. Louis Cardinals +2,500
Cincinnati Reds +2,500
San Diego Padres +2,500
Philadelphia Phillies +3,000
Chicago White Sox +3,000
Los Angeles Angels +3,000
Milwaukee Brewers +4,000
Boston Red Sox +5,000
Arizona Diamondbacks +6,000
Colorado Rockies +8,000
Toronto Blue Jays +10,000
Texas Rangers +10,000
Pittsburgh Pirates +20,000
Detroit Tigers +20,000
San Francisco Giants +30,000
Seattle Mariners +30,000
Miami Marlins +30,000
Baltimore Orioles +30,000
Kansas City Royals +30,000

Odds courtesy The SuperBook